Interviewing

Interviewing

•    Before the interview, be sure you know where you are going, drive time, and the parking situation.
•    Dress professionally and have you're attired laundered and ready the night before the interview.   (Don’t forget to polish those shoes!) Most industries will be most impressed with a business suit attire. How you look creates a first and lasting impression.
•    Take additional copies of our resume with you. Be prepared to “walk” your interviewers through your resume and be sure you can answer anything about it.
•    Offer detailed and specific examples that demonstrate your "fit" for the position.
•    Know the industry standards and the history of the company you are applying to.
•    Have questions ready for the interviewers about the position. But never bring up salary until you are offered the position. (See the list below for question suggestions).

Create a List of Questions to Ask the Interviewer

Come prepared with questions you can ask that demonstrate your understanding of the organization and interest in the position. It’s okay to have these written down. And it also makes a good impression if you quickly jot down the answers. Sometimes your prepared questions may get answered in the course of the interview, that’s okay. Just plan a list of 5 to 7 questions so you will be ready.
Here are a few suggestions:
•    What can I expect on a typical day like?
•    Why is this position open? Is it a new position in the company?
•    To whom does this position report?
•    What are your expectations of the person hired for this position within the first 30 days?
•    What do you like about working here?
•    When can I expect to hear from you?
•    And any other industry-related questions you may have.

WHAT NOT TO ASK!

  • Salary! Never mention salary unless you have officially been offered the position. Please see a career advisor as to the best way to navigate the, “So how much money do you need to make?” question.
  • Time off, lunch breaks, and other compensation issues will be addressed if a job offer is made, and you can address those questions at that time.

Follow-up:

  • Next-Day: Immediately send a thank you note to each person who interviewed you. They may be meeting with a long list of candidates, so it’s best to make contact while they still remember you.
    • Keep it brief, but consider the following:
      • Reference something you discussed in the meeting. Again, you want them to remember you, so this might help make a stronger connection.
      • Clarify any questions you stumbled on during the interview. If you forgot to bring up a relevant certification, for example, this is a good time to mention it.
      • Express appreciation for their time and consideration. The interview process can be labor and resource-intensive. This is a good time to show your gratitude and reinforce your interest in the position.

Written correspondence (i.e., physically mailing a letter) is rare these days but it is appropriate if a longer hiring timeline has been given. If your correspondence with the company has been primarily via email, it’s okay to send a thank you note via email. BUT…handwritten sure makes a big impression!

  • Next Week: If you haven’t heard anything within the employer’s given timeline, send an email to follow-up on the process.
    • Keep it brief, thank them again, and express your interest. Careful not to nag an employer for an answer, but if you still don’t get a response within a reasonable time, let it go and move on with your search.

Remember, you don’t have the job until you’ve signed a written offer letter. Keep looking for positions and applying for jobs, even if the interview went well and you assume the job will be offered to you.